More emphatically and more frequently than any other Prophet, the Prophet Jesus, upon him be peace, gave the good tidings of the Last Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings.
The Capstone in the Gospel of Matthew
Have you never read in the Scriptures: ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes? Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls will be crushed.’ (Matthew, 21.42–4)
The ‘capstone’ mentioned in the verses cannot be the Prophet Jesus for the verses refer to the crushing victories that the followers of the ‘capstone’ will win against their enemies. No people were ever broken to pieces or crushed because they resisted Christianity. Christianity gained ground against the Roman Empire only after it had lost its original identity and been reconciled with Roman paganism. The Western dominion over the world came after scientific thought’s triumph over the medieval Christian view of nature and was realized in the form of a ruthless colonialism. Whereas, Islam ruled almost half of the ‘old’ world for many centuries as a religion in its original purity and its enemies were many times defeated before it. In its struggle with other religions, Islam has always been successful. It is, again, Islam which is on the rise as both a pure, authentic religion and as a way of life, and which is the hope of salvation for humanity more than that, the Prophet Jesus himself alludes to this fact by stating explicitly that the kingdom of God will be taken away from his followers and given to a people who will produce its fruit.
Second, in a telling detail recorded in a hadith in the Sahih of al-Bukhari and that of Muslim, the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, describes himself as the ‘capstone’ completing the building of Prophethood.
Paraklit, the Spirit of Truth
In the Gospel of John, Jesus promises the arrival of the Last Prophet using a variety of names:
But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the ‘Paraklit’ will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment. (John, 16:7-8)
In these verses, the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, is referred to as the Paraklit. Paraklit is a Greek word meaning the Distinguisher between Truth and Falsehood. Although Christian interpreters have given this word different meanings such as Counselor (Gideons International) or Helper (American Bible Society) or Comforter (the Company of the Holy Bible), and claimed that it refers to the Holy Spirit, it is impossible even for Christians to establish whether the Holy Spirit has come down after Jesus and done what Jesus foretold he would do.
If, according to Christians, the Holy Spirit is the Archangel Gabriel, he came many times to the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, to bring Divine Revelations. Further, Jesus mentioned and predicted the Paraklit with other different names, but the same function, as is seen in the following verses:
When Paraklit comes – the Spirit of truth – who comes from the Father, he will testify about me. (John, 15.26)
I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking what is mine and making it known to you. (John, 16.12-14)
I will not speak with you much longer, for the Prince of this world is coming. And I posses nothing of him. (John, 14.30)
Who has come after Jesus other than the Prophet Muhammad, as the Comforter who has comforted human beings against fear of death, against worries about the future, against spiritual ailments of all kinds? As the Helper, who has helped mankind to attain real peace and happiness in both worlds? As the Prince of the world, who has ruled almost half of the world for fourteen centuries, and who has become the beloved of billions? And as the Spirit of truth who testified to Jesus, brought glory to him by declaring his Prophethood against the denial of the Jews and false deification of him by Christians, and restoring his religion to its pristine purity through the Book he brought? What shortcomings do the Western Christians attribute to the Prophet Muhammad, in contrast to Jesus and other Prophets, that, while almost all of the Christians of the ‘Middle East’ believed in him and converted to Islam within a few decades of his death, they persist in their denial of him and offer no justification?
Mawlana Jalal al-Din al-Rumi, a great Sufi saint, expresses in the following stanza the good tidings of the Prophet Muhammad by the Gospel:
In the Gospel Mustafa is mentioned with his attributes, in him is the mystery of all the Prophets; he is the bringer of happiness. The Gospel mentions him with his external form and features, and also with his personal virtues and Prophetic qualities.
In spite of the changes they have been subjected to over time, the Old and New Testaments still contain references to the Prophet Muhammad, only some of which we have quoted. The late Hussayn Jisri found one hundred and fourteen such allusions and quoted them in his Risala al-Hamidiya.
1. Paraclete is originally a Greek word. According to Webster’s New World Dictionary, it derives from the Greek word parakletos meaning intercessor, advocate, pleader. However, Abidin Pasha, a nineteenth-century scholar from Yanya, Greece, who knew Greek very well and whose works on Greek literature were highly praised by Greek authorities, writes that the origin of Paraclete is piriklitos, meaning Ahmad, the one who is much praised. (Hussain Jisri, Risala al-Hamidiya, 59). We also read in the Qur’an that Jesus predicted the Prophet Muhammad with the name, Ahmad, a synonym of Muhammad (61:6). Christians assert that by Paraclete Jesus means the Holy Spirit, but it is questionable what connection the Holy Spirit has with interceding, pleading or advocating, which, in fact, refer to the main attributes of the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, even though we accept that the word drives from paracletos. Besides, it should also be noted that translators of the Gospels intentionally refrain from writing Paraclete and, instead, they prefer to translate it, but all differently. Also, Jesus gives good tidings of the being to come not only with the name of Paraclete but also with such names as ‘the Prince of this world’ and the ‘Spirit of truth’, and with many other functions, which must, of course, belong to a Prophet, not to a ‘spirit’ or angel.